When it comes to Konami’s Duel Monsters adaptation, the one thing they really got wrong was Magic Cards. No, this isn’t even an observation from the point of the modern game – it was messed up from the beginning. Trap Cards were fairly accurate; you set them, and after a turn goes by, you can activate them – simple as that (there was the condition that only one Trap Card could be set per turn, but it would be impossible to set them apart from Magic Cards in the actual game). Magic Cards were more basic, and can be played from the hand. We got that part. But they can also be set and activated at any point later like Traps. This is the part that Konami really didn’t bother to translate. We got Quick-Play Magic Cards, which attempt to emulate the option of activating during your opponent’s turn and chaining to other effects, but I’ll go more into that later. Meanwhile, Equip Cards and Normal Magic Cards are weakened by the change. While it may seem unfair with Equip Cards, they too were intended to function this way (see Joey’s duel with Bandit Keith).
Now we get into the topic of Spell Speeds; Konami set up these rules to decide what types of cards have precedent over others, which puts Normal Magic Cards at the bottom, and Counter Trap Cards at the top. To many players, this was one of the harder aspects to grasp; you’d think destroying a card meant destroying a card, but the term ‘negate’ threw a wrench into that. Come to think of it, Counter Cards were probably the first arbitrary addition to the Konami Yu-Gi-Oh! Card Game. It’s been oft repeated; a Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG veteran is frustrated by the attempt of using Mystical Space Typhoon to prevent the activation of a card. But by Kazuki Takahashi’s rules, it would prevent it. There are no Spell Speed restrictions in the actual Duel Monsters, and as a result, complex and interesting chains are possible (like with Yugi vs. Arkana). So for those wanting to replicate the original Duel Monsters to some degree with the real life rules, be sure to take that into account.
One oddity that one might bring up is that Counter Cards are used in the show. Despite being useless in the face of your basic De-Spell and Remove Trap, there’s really only one explanation for why Counter Cards are still used; advertising. Yugi’s duel against the brainwashed Bandit Keith only exists within the anime and not the manga, so the writers had much more freedom. Also notice now Magic Jammer is also Ultra Rare as well, to tie in with the real life version released in the Volume 6 booster pack. Though with a real life card game, you can’t really out Yu-Gi-Oh! for advertising, since the cards are such an integral part of the show.
Images from Yu-Gi-Oh! Wiki